Wondergut Week Commencing Saturday 23 December 2017

Despite the festive season, I am still holding in mind our beloved microbes. We have jettisoned some desserts we traditionally made that were exceedingly sugar laden. I am also resisting buying the big tin of Roses (although it seems that Quality Street is dominating the market as I can’t see the Roses anywhere anyway – thankfully!!). We are having live yoghurt with desserts rather than ice cream & I have maximised the variety of vegetable accompaniments with meals.  Not earth-shattering changes but small ones – small ones that, over time, add up. Happy Christmas to you all.

If you would like to print off this Wondergut Week – here is the link.

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Food Critics’ Verdict, if worth listening to

Saturday 23 December
Aromatic Christmas Ham accompanied by mash, red cabbage & Brussel sprouts.

Cappuccino Semifreddo, Mince Pies & organic live yoghurt.

(Aromatic Christmas Ham – p32 Nigella Christmas – here is the link to the recipe. & here is the link to the Cappuccino Semifreddo recipe).

Sunday 24 December
Christmas Eve Light Walk Shop-Bought Canapes.

Home Made Salmon en Croute accompanied by roasted sweet potatoes, January king cabbage & cauliflower.

Yule Log & Pomegranate & Raspberry Cheesecake

(Here is the link to the salmon recipe. The Yule Log recipe is from p191 Nigella Christmas – here is the link to the recipe.

The cheesecake is on p82 Sainsbury’s Magazine December 2017 – here is the link to the recipe).

It seems likely from some recent research that pomegranates encourage the growth of the bacteria Akkermansia muciniphila. This bacteria is looking to be an increasingly important player in supporting the mucus lining of our gut. I can’t pretend that the cheesecake is good for us but topping it with fruit & pomegranate seeds, in particular at least means we are taking in some valuable  nutrients along with the sugar.
Monday 25 December
 Christmas Day Smoked Salmon, Scrambled Eggs, Bacon & Sourdough Bread OR possibly scotch sourdough pancakes with smoked salmon, crispy sprouts, avocado, eggs & bacon.

Roast Turkey with Sage & Onion Stuffing accompanied by pigs in blankets, roast potatoes, sweet potatoes, parsnips, roast carrots with toasted cumin, red cabbage, Brussel sprouts, savoy cabbage, bread sauce & gravy.

Yule Log, Pomegranate & Raspberry Cheesecake, Mince Pies, Christmas Cake.

(Scotch pancake brunch recipe – p83 Waitrose Magazine December 2017 – here is the link to the recipe ). Roasted carrot recipe – p195 Sarah Raven Christmas – here is the link to the recipe ).

I always use a Nigel Slater recipe for my Christmas cake (which I controversially do not ice – I HATE marzipan) it is on p364 of The Kitchen Diaries – here is a link to the recipe).

Tuesday 26 December
 Boxing Day Walk Bubble & Squeak with leftovers accompanied by a large green salad, sausage whirls & sausage rolls & a HUGE dog walk!
Wednesday 27 December
Fried Cod with Ginger, Beetroot, Orange & Sesame accompanied by mini roast potatoes, broccoli & courgettes.

Tiramisu Layer Cake.

(The cod recipe is from p258 Gather by Gill Meller – here is the link to the recipe).The tiramisu is on p93 Nigella Christmas – here is the link to the recipe).

I am practising what I preach. But I admit it takes WILL POWER – this feeding people crap to show them you love them thing is so EMBEDDED isn’t it? I went to write the ingredients for the tiramisu on the shopping list and I thought WHAT AM I DOING? My mother in law has high cholesterol & high blood pressure. Why would I feed her sugar, cream, marscapone & more cream? Unless I want to help her along her way to an early grave. Which I don’t. So we are abandoning the tiramisu and we will have some fruit or maybe a mince pie instead. I am not sure how she will feel about this as she loves her desserts but can we really love dessert THAT much??
Thursday 28 December
Red Cabbage & Roast Potato Hash with Caramelised Apples & Thyme accompanied by roast red cabbage with parsley pesto dressing, a chicory & mixed leaf salad & probably some leftover turkey!

(P22 & 20 Waitrose Magazine December 2017 – here is the link to the hash recipe & here is the link to the roasted red cabbage recipe).

Friday 29 December
 Toby Off On School Trip Maple Pork Ribs with baked Jerusalem artichokes, beetroot & fennel accompanied by flat beans & spring greens (p110 Nigella Express – here is the link to the recipe).  We have cut the chicken from the recipe here.
Saturday 30 December
 Leave free for leftovers feast.
Sunday 31 December
Ezulikes Arrive Baked Camembert with Honey Roasted Grapes & Pecans accompanied by carrot & cucumber dipping sticks.

Roast Wild Boar (or in our case, not very wild pork belly) with Molasses, White Beans, Brown Sugar & Mustard accompanied by leeks & broccoli.

Chocolate Orange Pots with Caramel Sauce.

Unpasteurised Cheese & Biscuits.

(The baked camembert recipe is from a very old Sainsbury’s Magazine – here is the link to the recipe. The boar recipe is from p236 Gather by Gill Meller – here is the link to the recipe & the dessert is from p76 Sainsbury’s Magazine December 2017 – here is the link to the recipe.)

Individual pot desserts help to limit serving size, which is a good idea on a 4 course meal!
Monday 1 January
Home Made Soup from leftover vegetables accompanied by whatever else is inhabiting the fridge. All eaten in front of a film most likely.

© Jo Webster December 2017

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